Motley Moose – Archive

Since 2008 – Progress Through Politics

It Must Gall Them

Ten days ago, conservative columnist George Will took a cool hard look at the two candidates and came to the conclusion that what he perceived Barack Obama lacked could be corrected, but that what he perceived John McCain possessed could not be:

It is arguable that, because of his inexperience, Obama is not ready for the presidency. It is arguable that McCain, because of his boiling moralism and bottomless reservoir of certitudes, is not suited to the presidency. Unreadiness can be corrected . . . by experience. Can a dismaying temperament be fixed?

There seems to be a growing chorus among the conservative chatting class that Obama’s temperament, that is, his cool and unflappable style when he is under pressure, trumps McCain’s experience.  

Today’s Washington Post contains a piece that Charles Krauthammer wrote that compares the presidential candidates to one another and finds McCain coming up short:

(McCain’s) frenetic improvisation has perversely (for him) framed (Obama) favorably as calm, steady and cool.

In the primaries, part of the reason Obama didn’t excite me was that I found him sort of boring, but given that after eight years of George Bush’s inept management, the chickens are coming home to roost, and to mix metaphors, the bottom is falling out of the barrel, I am finding reassuring Obama’s thoughtful, measured, and assured approach to problems.  Krauthammer notes, “Oliver Wendell Holmes Jr. famously said of Franklin Roosevelt that he had a ‘second-class intellect, but a first-class temperament.'”  He then goes on to raise obligatory right wing objections against Obama but concludes:

(Obama’s) got both a first-class intellect and a first-class temperament. That will likely be enough to make him president.

A favorable comparison with Franklin Delano Roosevelt: Obama has and will suffer more odious detractions than this one.  

When I listen to the conservative chatting class talk about Obama’s strengths, I surmise that it just must gall them that this guy is the nominee of our party.  Whether or not Will or Krauthammer votes for Obama, they certainly acknowledge that he is the man better suited to the hour.


  1. One of the worst lying, two-faced, soulless, intellectually bankrupt, neo-con hacks out there. I despise him and his compatriots. The worst failures of the Bush administration were failures because he followed their advice. He gave them what they wanted and then when the policies were shown to be flawed, they turned on him and blamed him for their own flawed ideas.  

  2. GrassrootsOrganizer

    Yeah, I knew him and dispised the guy.  but I have to admit, even a rabid life long liberal like me — the “Great Communicator” could suck me in.  I’d be walking past the TV, he’d be on, like he was every other hour or so, and before I knew what was happening to me I’d be sitting on the couch nodding and feeling all cozy and American.

    No F-ing way is Palin the next Reagan.  I’d find any excuse in the universe not to listen to that woman right up to pouring gas in my ears and setting them on fire.  

  3. GrassrootsOrganizer

    Because whatever it is, I’d like some for the weekends.  She never stops being folksy and chirpy no matter what she’s talking about — nucluler weapons, the anialation of 9 million Israelis, the collapse of the world’s economy — whatever the topic she treats it like her secret recipe for Rice Krispy Squares.  Is she EVER sincere?  Is anything EVER so grave or significant it’s above her stupid schtick?  Gawd.  

    It’s like listening to a children’s album about world events that never ends.  Half the fucking time I expect some goof in a giant purple bird suit to appear next to her and the two of them break into song about how to tie your shoes or some shit.

    And I just LOVE how this brain trust has reduced the American people down to hockey moms and “Joe Sixpacks”.  Wow.  Not teachers and cops and nurses mind you.  That’s her “base” — dumbshits and the women that pick up behind them.  

    where the hell did this woman come from?  

  4. spacemanspiff

    It was nice that Palin got her passport for the first time to visit 500 members of the Alaska National Guard in Kuwait, but I seriously doubt that she gave any directions on how to fight insurgents, though she sure can handle a heavy gun.

    Palin scares the shit out of me.

  5. NavyBlueWife

    I often keep looking for reasons in this unreasonable situation, but everything I come up with falls so dangerously short of catharsis.  I keep looking for complete and utter outrage by the populous, but I guess that would take a draft…so instead there’s stop loss, forced conscription to return to two war theaters over and over and over again.

    Don’t get me wrong.  Like Chris posted earlier, the military members I know are proud to do their jobs, to go in harms’ way when called, so the rest us don’t have to.  But the current CiC, et al, have a lot of blood on their hands, and we have to get them outta there.

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